Classic Coleslaw

VideoFavorite SummerQuick and EasyCabbageColeslaw

Here's a classic coleslaw recipe made with thinly sliced cabbage, carrots and green onion, seasoned with mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar dressing. It's what you want for picnics, backyard BBQs, and summer potlucks!

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

What is Coleslaw

The word “coleslaw” comes from the Dutch word, “koolsla”, “kool” meaning cabbage and “sla” meaning lettuce or salad. The word entered our English language from the Dutch in New York in the late 1700s. Since then it has been a featured side dish at almost every picnic or barbecue in America.

VIDEO! How to Make Coleslaw

Ingredients for Easy Coleslaw

We have homemade coleslaw at least once a week, usually with fish, and often with burgers or hot dogs. This coleslaw recipe (our way of preparing it) is ridiculously easy with cabbage, carrot, and onions gently mixed and coated with mayonnaise, a dab of yellow mustard (which by the way is just Dijon mustard with some added turmeric), vinegar, and black pepper.

Classic homemade Coleslaw in bowl

Coleslaw Recipe Modifications

We also often make this coleslaw recipe without mayonnaise. Sometimes we dress it simply with seasoned rice vinegar. Sometimes we add some shredded green apple to the mix. You can easily adjust these coleslaw ingredients for your taste. (See links at the bottom of the recipe for more coleslaw ideas.)

Are you a coleslaw eater? If so, what’s your favorite way of preparing it?

More Easy Summer Side Dishes

Classic Coleslaw Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

If you are making a lot of coleslaw, it's easiest to use a mandoline to slice the cabbage.

However you slice the cabbage, you'll have an easier time of it if you cut the head first in quarters, from the top through the core. Then lay a quarter wedge of cabbage on its side and cut out the core.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups thinly sliced cabbage (green or purple, or a mix)
  • 1 carrot, grated on the large holes of a box grater
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar or wine vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (more to taste)

Method

1 Assemble the salad: Place the cabbage, carrot, and onions in a large bowl. Add the dressing ingredients and gently mix so that all of the shredded cabbage is coated with the dressing.

2 Serve: Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Serve immediately.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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83 Comments / Reviews

No ImageClassic Coleslaw

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Liz

    I used my food processor to grate onion carrot and cabbage. Great cole slaw!

    xxxxxyyyyy

  2. Kj

    Excellent and easy!

    xxxxxyyyyy

  3. juneY

    used apple cider vinegar & dijon mustard instead… all good except for the green onions which made it awful with the overpowering taste of green onions…. tasted it before adding green onions and it was good! ended up spending a long time picking them out of the mixture

    xxxxxyyyyy

  4. Anne

    Lovely I added 1tbs apple cider vinegar instead of 2tsp cider vinegar by mistake but it gave it a lovely tang.

    xxxxxyyyyy

  5. Regina Schreiner

    It was super!!! Thank you Regina Brazil!!!

    xxxxxyyyyy

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